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Sinkhole buyout awaits evacuated homeowners

(Christian Science Monitor) Texas Brine will offer buyouts to Assumption Parish residents whose homes are in a swampy area under evacuation because of a nine-acre sinkhole, Gov. Bobby Jindal said Wednesday.

Scientists say the sinkhole formed after the collapse of an underground salt cavern operated by Houston-based Texas Brine Co. LLC, which extracted brine and piped it to nearby petrochemical facilities. The cavern failure released oil and natural gas from formations along the salt dome face.

“They caused the situation. They’ve got to make this right,” Jindal said after a closed-door meeting with company leaders.